Skip to main content

Full text of "Revolutionary Pension Declarations from Pittsylvania County, Virginia"

See other formats


Early Journal Content on JSTOR, Free to Anyone in the World 

This article is one of nearly 500,000 scholarly works digitized and made freely available to everyone in 
the world by JSTOR. 

Known as the Early Journal Content, this set of works include research articles, news, letters, and other 
writings published in more than 200 of the oldest leading academic journals. The works date from the 
mid-seventeenth to the early twentieth centuries. 

We encourage people to read and share the Early Journal Content openly and to tell others that this 
resource exists. People may post this content online or redistribute in any way for non-commercial 

Read more about Early Journal Content at 
journal-content . 

JSTOR is a digital library of academic journals, books, and primary source objects. JSTOR helps people 
discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching 
platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit 
organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please 



(Contributed by Mrs. N. E. Clement, Chatham, Va.) 

Robert Ferguson. 

On this 22 nd day of August 1832 Personally apeared before the 
court of Pitts, now sitting, Robert Ferguson, a resident of said 
county & State aforesaid, aged Seventy Two years, and made 
the following declaration on his oath — that he entered the Ser- 
vice of the U. S. some time in year 1779 as a Substitute for 
Bazabiel Wier & marched from the County of Pitts, in a Com- 
pany of Militia commanded by Capt. Witcher to Salisbury in 
the state of N. C. & joined the N. C. Militia in that place under 
Colo. Mason, he was stationed there two or three months, then 
marched to Charlotte in said state N. C. & remained at that 
place a few days, they were marched from there, for some time 
in various directions untill they arrived at Stone Inlet on coast 
of S. C. & were stationed near that place until their term of 
service ended, being Six months, that his discharge is lost 
and cannot be found, He does not know any person living that 
was with him on that tour but the Service rendered is Proved 
by Bazabiel Wier who employed him as his Substitute. In the 
Spring 1780 he was employed by Joseph Terry to assist him in 
driving a Parcel of Cattle into the State of N. C, when they 
arrived at Wilks Court House about the 15 th day of May 1780. 
He again entered the Service of the U. S. as a Volunteer solider 
and marched from the said County of Wilks in state aforesaid 
in a Company commanded by Capt. Wm. Cleveland & joined 
the Regiment commanded by Colo. John Cleveland, that they 
continued marching in various directions Sometimes down the 
Catawba River, not being stationed long at any One Place, they 
were Principally engaged in Searching for, and taking Torys 
untill about the first of October, they returned to said Wilks C. 


H. & were there discharged by Colo. Cleveland. The whole 
of the time rendered on this tour was at least 4 months & 15 
days. His discharge is lost and cannot be found. 

About the first of December 1780 he again entered the Service 
of the united States as a substitute for Wm. Bennett and 
marched from the County of Pitts. State of Va. in a company of 
drafted Militia commanded by Capt. John Winn to the Island 
Ford on Dan River, from there to the great falls on the said 
Dan River where Danville is now situated, from there they 
marched to the state of N. C. & joined the Main Army under 
Gen'l Stephens and Gen'l Lawson. He was then trans- 
ferred to a company commanded by Capt. Wm. Dix and 
marched with him in the Army as aforesaid in various directions, 
not being stationed long at any one place, but sometimes 
marched nearly all night, untill they met with Lord Cornwallis 
in the county of Guilford, when a severe Battle was fought, 
the Americans were defeated in that engagement & retreated 
to Troublesome Iron Works near Haw River, where they were 
again organized and marched from that place under Gen'l 
Green in Pursuit of the British untill they arrived at Ramseys 
Mill on Deep River in state of N. C. He was discharged at that 
Place by Capt. William Dix in month of April 1781- — the 
whole tour of service rendered on this tour is at least four months. 
His discharge is lost but his service can be proved by James M. 
Williams, who was a soldier with him at same time & place. 

About last of Ap. 1781 he was drafted as a soldier and marched 
from Co. of Pitts, in a Company of Militia commanded by Capt. 
Henry Burnett, thro Halifax Co. to Charlotte C. H. & 
joined the army at that place under Gen'l Lawson, was trans- 
ferred to a comp'y commanded by Capt. John Buddy, attached 
to the Regiment commanded by Maj r Purnell; from there was 
marched to Prince Edward C. H. and from there through Cum- 
berland Co. & crossed James River at Carter's Ferry & con- 
tinued to march until they came to Dandridges Old field in 
Hanover County when he was again transferred to a company 
commanded by Capt. Wm. Clark. He marched with him under 
Maj. Purnell in said Army to a place called Morben Hill about 
17 miles below Rich.; was stationed there several weeks, then 


marched the whole Army under Baron Steuben, Gen'l Green, 
Stephens and Lawson to Jamestown. A Battle was fought at 
that place, after which they went back to Morben Hill where 
they were stationed until he was discharged by Capt. Wm. 
Clark about last of July 1781. the whole service rendered on 
this tour was three months his discharge is lost and cannot 
be found but the service Rendered is proved by Leroy Shelton, 
who was a soldier with him in same Companies & at same time. 

That as soon as he returned home from Serving the above 
tour, which was in the month of August 1781 he enlisted with 
Wm. McCraw, who was a Deputy Quarter Master for the 
Southern Army at Peytonsburg, Pittsylvania Co., Va., during 
the war & remained in the service of the U. S., engaged as a 
waggoner driving the public teams under the command of the 
said Wm. McCraw untill after the end of the War. The whole 
time service rendered under this enlistment was at least one 
year. His discharge is lost, but his service can be proved by 
Jas. M. Williams, who was in same service with McCraw. — 
Was born in Co. of Halifax, state of Va., year 1761. 

Lived in Pitts. Co. when entered the service of U. S. & has 
lived in said Co. ever since. 

Sworn to & subscribed the day & year aforesaid. 

Robert X Ferguson, 

Abraham Chaney. 

On this 22 nd day of August, 1832, Personally appeared in open 
court before Dan'l Coleman, Jas. Logan, David H. Clark & 
Wm. D. Pannill, the court of Pitts, now sitting, Abraham Chaney 
a resident of said county, aged 72 yrs. and made following decla- 
ration on his oath — 

That he entered the sendee of the U. S. as a Volunteer Soldier 
in a company of Militia commanded by Capt. Donaldson, jr., 
Lieut. Moses Hutchings & Ensign Joseph Williams, & 
marched from the County of Pittsylvania on the 9 th day of April 
1776 and went thro Franklin Co., crossed the Blue Ridge 


at Magotty Gap, New River at Englishes Ferry and continued 
on to the Islands of Holston River & was stationed on that 
river in a fort; from that Place, Capt. Donaldson with 15 men. 
of whom he was one, went out to search for the Cherokee 
Indians, ranging Principally thro' the woods in Various 
directions for about two weeks when they returned to the same 
fort where they remained until their tour of duty being for three 
months expired. When he was discharged by Capt. Donalson 
at that place in the month of July 1776, about 300 miles from 
home making in all the time rendered on this tour including the 
time to travel home at least 3J^ months. 

His discharge is lost or mislaid so that it cannot be found but 
the service rendered is proved by Joshua Dodson who was a 
soldier with him all the time. 

He again entered the Service of the U. S. as a soldier in a com- 
pany of Militia commanded by the same Capt. John Donalson, 
jr., Lieut. John Gwinn, and marched from the said Pittsylvania 
Co. on 7 th day of April 1778, went thro' the county of Frank- 
lin to Colo. Preston in Montgomery, remained near his House 
a few days and marched from there to Hatfield Fort on Stoney 
Creek near New River in said Co. Montgomery, & was sta- 
tioned at that place under the said Officers (no other troops 
being there) until the 12 th of Aug. 1778, when he was discharged 
by Capt. Donalson, the time of this tour being four months & 
8 days. His discharge is lost, but proved by John Neal & 
John Farthing, who were soldiers with him at that place. 

In the winter of 1781 he was drafted as a Militia soldier & 
marched from the Co. of Pitts, in a company under the command 
of Capt. Clements, thro the County of Halifax into N. C. to 
Hillsborough and was there taken sick Placed in a Hospital 
near that Place & was confined there two months & 15 days, 
when he hired his Brother Joseph Chaney to take his place — 
Joseph was received as a Substitute for him & he was dis- 
charged from the service being still sick. His discharge is lost 
& cannot be found. 

Relinquishes pension in other Rolls of Agency. 

Sworn to & Subscribed the day & year aforesaid. 

Abraham X Chaney. 
marki 1 

revolutionary pension declarations 153 

Daniel Bradley. 

On 22 day of August 1832, personally appeared in open court 
before David Clark, Wm. L. Pannill, &c, county court of Pitts, 
now sitting, Daniel Bradley, a resident of the Co. of Pitts. & 
made following declaration — 

That he first enlisted and entered the service of the U. S. — as a 
regular soldier in the 1" Va. Regt. of Southern Army, was en- 
listed by Ensign Belew in Cumberland County, Va., where he 
then resided, on the 1*-* of July 1780, engaged to serve for 18 
mo* and was marched by Capt. Alexander Grothemy from 
Cumberland Co. to Chesterfield C. H., the place of rendezvous 
where he was put under command of Capt. White, whose com- 
mand was attached to the armed force commanded by Col. 
Campbell, Mulenburg — the commanding general, from there he 
marched under the command of Col. Campbell and Capt. Mor- 
ton to Guilford C. H. or its neighborhood & was engaged in the 
Battle of Guilford commanded by Maj. General Greene. From 
thence after that Battle he marched under Colo. Campbell & 
Maj. Gen'l Greene and Capt. Morgan, who fell in on the way to 
ninety-six, where he remained 31 days, the whole month of May 
1781. From thence he marched under the same General 
officers, Campbell and Greene, skirmishing & taking by the 
way Scotch lake Fort, Friday's Fort, Thompsons Fort, Augusta 
Fort, the Blockhouse to Camden, where they were stationed for 
10 days. From thence he was marched under the same officers, 
Capt. Morgan, Colo. Campbell & General Greene to the 
Eutaw Springs, where on the 8 th of Sept. 1781 he was engaged 
in that Battle. From there they reconnoitered about that 
Section of the country, checking the enemy, during which time 
they remained several weeks on the High hills of Santee, the 
Place of Rendezvous. From there they were marched under 
Lieut. Greene, Capt. Morgan being wounded at Eutaw Springs, 
to Stone; from thence to Salisbury in N. C. where he was dis- 
charged by Lieut. Greene. That his discharge is mislaid or 
lost, that he has no documentary evidence to prove the facts 
required. his 

Daniel X Bradley, 

154 virginia historical magazine. 

James Hopkins. 

On this 17 th day of Sept. personally appeared in open Court 
before the Justices of the court of Pitts, now sitting, James 
Hopkins, a resident in the state of Va. in the Co. of Pitts., aged 
sixty-seven years on the 22 day of February 1832, who being 
first sworn according to law, doth on his oath make the following 

That he entered the service of the U. S. as a Substitute in the 
place of James Hopkins, Sen' sometime in the Spring 1780 and 
marched from the County of Amherst & State, aforesaid, under 
the Command of Capt. Azariah Martin, Lieu* Wm. Holt, and 

Ensign Leroy, the place of rendezvous was at Hillsborough 

in the State of N. Carolina. After our arrival there we were 
transferred to 4 th Reg't Virginia Militia Commanded by Col. 

Lucas from the County of Mecklenburg, the Brigade was 

Commanded by Brigadier Gen. Stevens, from the County of 
Culpeper. After remaining at Hillsborough some time, for the 
purpose of being disciplined, we were ordered to march to S. 
Carolina and join Maj. Gen'l H. Gates, Commander in Chief 
of the Southern Army at a place called Rugeley's Mills on the 
morning of the 13 th August, rested the balance of the day, and 
10 o'Clock at night took up the line of march to Surprize the 
enemy before day, who were encamped at Campden, who 
marched at the same hour; the two armies met on the middle 
ground. A Sharp Skirmish between the advanced guards took 
place that night (the line was formed and the men stood under 
arms all night) — the next morning August the 16 th the line was 
ordered to advance and a general engagement took place about 
the rising of the sun, which resulted in a Shameful defeat of the 
Southern Army. There was no place designated, in the event 
of a defeat, at which we should rendezvous, we had lost all our 
baggage, and were destitute of any Clothing, except what little 
we had on. Separated from our officers and no means of Sub- 
sistance, under these appalling circumstances, although Our 
term of service was nearly expired, a Considerable number of the 
Company to which I belonged, determined to make the best of 
their way home. After our return to Amherst County, a Court 
of inquiry Convened and made an Order that we should all be 


sent back and serve a tour of eight months under regular 
Officers. We were accordingly mustered and put under the 
Command of Cap't Pamlin who marched us back to Hills- 
borough, where Gen'l Green's army then lay, and we were 
transferred to the Command of a Cap* Graves of Co. of Culpeper 
who was assigned to take Command of the men sent back from a 
few Other Counties for the same offence. In a short time the 
Army was ordered to march to the South, we passed thro' 
Sallisbury, Charlotte, &c, and about the 1 st of Jan. 1781, we 
took up winter quarters on North Side of Peedee river, near the 
Cheraw hills, S. Carolina. 

Sometime in the month of Feb., if my memory is correct,there 
was a general order issued for all married men belonging to the 
eight months' Company as they were called, to be discharged, 
and the young men to be retained, till their term of service ex- 
pired, this reduced the Company very Considerably. Capt. 
Graves was permitted to return home with those men that were 
discharged, and the balance retained in service were placed 
under the command of a Cap* Webb and Lieut. Webb, who I 
understood came from about Richmond in Virginia. Shortly 
after this Gen'l Morgan defeated Col. Tarlton at a place called 
Cowpens, and took a number of prisoners, and had to make a 
rapid retreat to save them from being retaken by the enemy. 
As soon as Gen. Greene received the information, he immediately 
marched off the Army to Cover Morgan's retreat, and left this 
small Company of eight months' men, some of whom were sta- 
tioned at mills to guard them and keep them employed in 
grinding meal and flower for the use of the Army, and some to 
guard the encampment. Finally Capt. Webb received Orders 
to take charge of eight or ten waggons, loaded with meal and 
flower, and about four hundred head of Hogs, and to follow on 
after the Army, and we were in fact, in rear of both armies. 

When we reached Deep river in N. Carolina intending to go 
to Guilford C. H., we there received intelligence that Cornwallis 
was at the place, we then had to change our rout, turned to the 
right, went thro' Hillsborough & Granville County, and 
crossed the Roanoke river at Taylor's Ferry, near which place 
in the County of Mecklenburg, in State of Va., was a Com- 


missaries Store, where the Cap* delivered the meal, flower Hogs 
&c, which we protected and brought safe through a part of our 
Country that at that time was literally speaking in the hands 
of the British and tories. By this time our term of service was 
nearly expired, we were permitted to draw up a Petition, & 
send it on by express to Gen. Greene, stating our situation, that 
we were almost naked, almost worn out with fatigue, & pray- 
ing him to send orders to the Cap 1 to discharge us, which he did 
and we met the express in the county of Halifax, near Banister 
river in State of Va., where the Company were accordingly 
discharged, which was about the 1" of March 1781. This dis- 
charge has long since been destroyed, he has no documentary 
evidence to prove his service; he claims to have served in the 
whole nine months. 

He hereby relinquishes every Claim whatsoever to a pension 
or annuity, except the present, and declares that his name is not 
on the pension roll of the Agency of any State. 

James Hopkins. 

James Nance. 

James Nance, age 70 yrs., on 17 day of Sept. 1832 made follow- 
ing declaration before open court of Pitts. Co., Va — 

That he was born on 2 d day of Feb. 1762 in the County of 
Amelia (now Nottoway) Va., according to his Father's Register, 
which is not in his possession; that he entered the service of the 
U. S. as a drafted Soldier on the 9 th day of February 1779 under 
Capt. Wm. Fitzggerald, Lieut. Charles Irby, Ensign Bowling 
Hall, and marched to Halifaxtown, N. C, where he joined Col. 
David Mason of Va. & marched from thence to Hillsborough 
& Salsbury, N. C. and joined General Lincoln at Stone Camp, 
S. C, and fought a hard Battle with the British on the 20 th of 
June 1779, in which he was engaged from the commencement 
to the end, after which he marched back to camp where he 
remained some time. That he knew Count Pulaskie and 
General Parsons, &c, from thence was marched to Camden, 
S. C. and discharged in August 1779. After serving a tower of 
6 months, that he acted as fifer and was disbanded by Col. 
Mason, and returned to Amelia, Va. on 10 th Aug. 1779. 


In the year 1780 he served a tower of Duty under Capt. Gray, 
belonging to the United States Army, commanded by Col. 
White. The fall of same year, he was called on to render ser- 
vice agreeably to draughfted numbers and served a tower of 3 
months under Capt. Irby, Lieut's name not recollected, was 
marched to Petersburg, Va., from there to Cabbin point, thence 
to Markeys mills thence to Nancemond, thence to a place not 
recollected, and returned to Nancymun, he then interted (can't 
make this word out) in the calvary under Chas. Irby, for during 
(can't make this word out) the War, upon condition that he 
could procure a horse, was priviledged to go home & get a 
horse & return to camp, & in the event he could not get a 
horse, his absence was to be counted as on furlow; when he got 
home it being inconvenient to procure a horse and a young man 
in the neighborhood by the name of Elisha Gunn being called 
on to join Genl. Greene in opposition to Lord Cornwallice, the 
said Gunn and himself changed towers, and being organized 
he marched under Capt. Overstreet and joined headquarters 
on troublesome Creak, N. C. After various marches they met 
the British and had a severe Battle at Gilford Courthouse, after 
marching to deep river, at ramsey's mills, Chatham County, 
N. C, he was honourably discharged, by Brigadier General 
Lawson of the Va. troops, after which he returned to Amelia 
county, Va. There he remained until the 5 th day of Jan. 1801 
at which time he removed to Wake Co. N. C, where he has 
remained ever since, & being on a visit to friends in Pitts. Co. 
Va., avails himself of the opportunity to make his declaration, 
having it more in his power to establish his services here than 
in N. C, serving as a Militiaman there was no written discharge 
given to such. 


James X Nance. 


William Dews. 

On this 20 th day of August 1832 personally appeared before 
the Court of the County of Pittsylvania now sitting, Wm. Dews, 


a resident of said Co., aged 80 yrs. who being first duly sworn 
according to law, doth on his oath make following declaration — 

That he enlisted in the Army of the U. S. in the month of 
Feb. 1776 for two yrs. with Lieut. Henderson in Cap* Walkers 
Company, then stationed at Charlottesville in the County of 
Albemarle, Va. On the 15 th day of that month this company 
left Charlottesville & marched direct to Gloucester Court 
House, Va. & from there they marched to Chesapeake Bay, 
and went across to the County of Northampton & was there 
attached to the 9 th Reg't of the Va. line under the Command of 
Col. George Matthews and Major Ivins. That they were sta- 
tioned in said Co. of Northampton untill about the 19 th or 20 th 
of Dec. 1776, when they were marched from there to Morristown 
in New Jersey and joined the army under Gen'l George Wash- 
ington at that place in January 1777, where he had taken up 
Winter Quarters. 

Early in the Spring following a picked Company was made 
up from the different regiments and Placed under the command 
of Lieut. Henderson who acted as Capt. of which he said Wm. 
Dews was one. This Company was put under Col. Daniel 
Morgan, who commanded a Rifle choir and was with him in three 
engagements. On one day, first at Brunswick where the British 
had wintered, the 2 d and third near the same place, that he con- 
tinued with Col. Morgan Several months until he was ordered to 
Albany. That he left Col. Morgan near Summerset C. H., 
New Jersey, and returned under the command of Lieut. Martin 
to the said 9 th Reg' under Col. Matthews and was stationed at 
the Cross Roads near Philadelphia when the British arrived at 
the head of Elk River. He was placed under the Command of 
Col. Richard Parker and was with him in the Battle of Brandy- 
wine on the 11 th of September 1777. Soon after that he was 
again transferred to the 9 th Regiment with Colo. Matthews and 
was with him in the Battle of Germantown when his Regiment 
was defeated by the British and he, said Dews, was taken 
Prisoner on the 4 th of October 1777 and carried to Philadelphia 
and put in Jail, kept there about eight months and was then 
carried by the British to New York and kept under guard 18 
days. Then exchanged at Elizabeth River about the 17 th 


July 1778, then marched to the White plains in the State of 
New York and there discharged about the last of the same 
month. The whole of. the service rendered under this enlist- 
ment including the time of his being a prisoner with the British 
is two yrs. and about 6 months. His discharge was destroyed 
by the British in the town of Petersburg, Va., soon after he 
obtained it, but the service rendered is proved by the affidavits 
of David Street and Dudley Calloway, who were regular soldiers 
with him in the revolutionary War. That he resided in the 
county of Albemarle when he entered the service of the U. S. 
in the yr. 1776. After his discharge from said service in yr. 
1778, he resided for some time in the town of Petersburg, Va. 
He now resides and has lived in the Co. of Pittsylvania for 
about 50 years. Thereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a 
pension except the present and declares that his name is not on 
the Pension Roll of any agency of any State. 

William X Dews, 

I, Dudley Calloway of the Town of Lynchburg in the Co. of 
Campbell and State of Va., do hereby certify and do Solemnly 
Swear that I enlisted a Soldier in the Army of the Revolution 
in the year 1776 and Served in the 5 th Regiment of the Va. line 
for about 16 mo. when he was detached from said 5 th Reg't & 
put under the command of Col. Daniel Morgan, who command- 
ed a Rifle Choir and Served with said Morgan, that he then be- 
came acquainted with Wm. Dews of Pitts. Co., Va., who was a 
regular Soldier in the 9 th Reg't under Col. Matthews, that he 
the said Wm. Dews was also detached from 9 th Reg't and was 
put under Col. Morgan and served with me under said Morgan 
several months, when he was put back with said Col. Matthews 
of the said 9 th Regiment, and I was informed that said Dews 
was in Battle of Germantown and taken pirsoner by the British 
and kept several months. That I believe the said Wm. Dews 
enlisted for two years and served faithfully as soldier in the 
Army of the Revolution. Given under my hand & seal this 
14 th day of August 1832. 

Dudley Calloway. (Seal) 


William M. Nance. 

William M. Nance, aged 72 years, Sept. 17, 1832, personally 
appeared in open court in Pitts. Co. & made following 
declaration — 

That he was born on the 18"' January 1760, in County of 
Amelia, now Nottoway, Va., according to his father's register 
which is not in his possession, that he entered the service of the 
U. S. as a substitute for Wm. Mitchel in the year 1777 under 
Capt. Gabriel Fowlke, Jno. Knight, Lieut. & Wm. Brookin, 
Ensign, at the Court House of Amelia Co., Va., and marched to 
Williamsburg & joined the Regiment under the Command of 
Col. Vivian Brookin and after remaining there a short time 
was ordered to Hampton where he joined the army under the 
command of General Tho 8 Nelson, where he served several 
months, the particular time not recollected but think it was 
not less than 3 months and was disbanded by Col. Brookin at 
Hampton without any regular discharge and returned home 
where he remained until early in the month of Feb. 1779 when 
he was drafted and marched under Capt. Wm. Fitzgerald, 
Lieut. Charles Irby to Halifax Town, North Carolina where he 
joined Col. David Mason and marched thro' Hillsborough, 
Salsbury, N. Carolina and joined Gen. Lincoln at Stone Camp, 
South Carolina & fought a hard Battle with the British on 
the 20 th of June 1779 in which he was engaged from the Com- 
mencement to the end after which he marched back to Camp 
where he remained some time. Knew Count Pulaskie, Genl. 
Parsons, etc., and from thence was marched to Camden, S. 
Carolina and disbanded in August 1779, after serving a tour 
of 6 months, during which time he was orderly sergeant & was 
disbanded by Col. Mason. Returned to Amelia, Va., where 
he remained till Dec. 1780, when he removed to County of 
Pitts., where he has resided ever since and in the year 1781 he 
was drafted and marched from the county afr d under Capt. 
Chas. Williams, Lieut. Dix or Hunt, he does not recollect 
which, to York Town, Va., where he was regularly engaged in 
the siege until the Surrender, 2 days after which he with the 
other sick of the Troops of Pitts, was discharged by General 
Stephens which discharge is lost or mislaid. 

Wm. M. Nance.